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Events / Exhibitions USCG Breaking News For Acceptance of UV Based BWTS

Few days ago USCG informed four ultraviolet BWM manufacturers that the Most Probable Number, or MPN, method is not considered as an equivalent alternative to the testing method .

This is a real milestone on the way to USCG Type approval which has caused tremendous impact in the marine industry.

Coast Guard review concluded that the MPN test method is not equivalent because it does not measure the efficacy of the BWMS to the performance standard required by the regulations. The regulations specifically require ballast water treatment systems to be evaluated based on their ability to kill certain organisms. By this serious decision The United States Coast Guard (USCG) declares it will not approve BWT Systems if they fail to kill the potentially invasive marine organisms transported in ballast water.

It is obvious that the maritime industry is very concerned and still tries to interpret the future developments behind this decision. Especially UV manufacturers today are facing new challenges (such as UV-T questions, redesign cost, retesting cost, holding time, increased power requirements etc) regarding the operational limitations and uncertainty for their systems. They have to cope with questions that will be arise from customers for their future BWTS operation issues and the problems for existing ships already fitted with UV technology BWTS.

Without doubt the rejection MPN method is a stroke for BWT makers utilizing ultraviolet (UV) irradiation as obviously keep them away from full USCG approval or at least delays them for a long period. On the other hand this is a clear sign which proves the rigorous requirements of USGC. Only systems with proven technology and efficacy will be accepted. Although there were rumors from a few UV makers in the past that USCG will finally accept MPV method finally their expectations did not come true and USCG stipulated that they set high standards that strictly must be followed by all BWTS makers.

ERMAFIRST monitor industry’s stakeholders attitude and we expect reactions from the shipping companies after the lessons learned. With IMO BWTS ratification coming closer we anticipate increased demand from the market. All owners are now more educated and their market research will become more detailed as they all looking for cost effective systems, with certification that will operated with minimum limitations in most areas of the world.

ERMAFIRST is standing carefully in the new era and feel confident that has choosen a technology that has proven it’s ability to satisfy USCG regulations and testing requirements according to strict ETV protocol. We are on the way to the USCG Type Approval which is expected soon in 2016 as our on board tests almost done and the results are better than expected. There are technologies and makers that can really meet all water qualities and effluent discharge requirements. ERMAFIRST is the leading one.
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